Many refer to mixed martial arts as the world’s fastest-growing sport, and it figures. With the Ultimate Fighting Championship now holding regular events in the UK, it’s easy to see how MMA has become more and more popular over the past decade, building a strong presence and an ever-increasing British following.
It’s not just the sport that has gained much attention lately. MMA betting has never been more favoured, with the number of MMA bettors and bookies continually growing. If you want to get in on the action but you’re new to the whole concept, you could probably use all the help you can get. Not to worry – this guide will teach you everything you need to know to come out as a betting champion.
Just like with any other kind of sports betting, the first thing you should do is get acquainted with all the rules of the sport you intend to bet on. If you’re not familiar with the whats, hows, and whys of MMA, you can only summon luck to help you win bets.
Fortunately, MMA basic rules are quite easy to get your head around. The fights take place in a ring or cage and, unless stopped by the referee, usually last three to five rounds. For the competition to be considered fair, the fighters must be in the same weight class. While MMA has fewer restrictive rules than other combat sports, moves such as hair pulling, eye-gouging, and fish-hooking remain forbidden. The winner can be determined by decision, knockout (TKO), submission, or forfeit. If, however, a fight ends for reasons outside fighters’ control, a ‘no contest’ is declared, meaning there’s no winner or loser.
Where To Bet on MMA
Predicting the outcome of a fight is only half the battle. With so many MMA betting sites available, finding the best place online to bet on MMA can also prove challenging.
Not so long ago, your only option for placing a bet would be a brick-and-mortar bookmaker. Luckily, thousands of online betting sites available nowadays make it easy to bet on anything, all from the comfort of your home. That said, having so many options to choose from can make the search for that perfect MMA betting site quite hard. Different websites often include different bet types and perks, and the betting odds can vary from bookmaker to bookmaker, so make sure to pay attention to all that the site puts on the table.
In the UK, the most popular online MMA betting venues include websites such as Betfair, Unibet, William Hill, and 888sport, to name a few. What bettors seem to like the most about them is the sense of security and trustworthiness they get from these sites. After all, what’s the point of betting on MMA if you’re not confident you’ll be able to claim your winnings or protect your transactions?
Given the different promotions and conditions each of these sites offers, it all comes down to deciding which ones suit your own needs and preferences. Our advice would be to sign up for several MMA betting UK sites and get a feel of each of them before committing to a single bookie. Don’t forget to compare the offers and bet types and read the fine print along the way.
MMA Bet Types You Should Know About
Predicting the winner is just one of the many options available when betting on MMA fights. You can also try and guess how that winner will win, for example. Will the fighter knock out the opponent? Will one of the fighters tap out? If you believe you know the specifics of the outcome, you can cash in on it. So, before we move on, let’s take a closer look at the types of bets MMA betting aficionados enjoy the most.
At the top of the vast list of MMA betting varieties is the ever-so-loved moneyline betting. This kind of bet is pretty straightforward as all you have to do to win is correctly predict the winner of a fight. In layman’s terms, if you’re betting on fighter A in a fight against fighter B and A wins, you win as well. Of course, if fighter A loses, you also lose.
You should pay particular attention to certain aspects when placing moneyline bets, though, namely betting odds. As the name suggests, oddsmakers come up with odds that make betting riskier but more attractive as well. Let’s say a heavyweight champion is about to face a fighter making his or her MMA debut. If the winnings for each fighter were equal, everyone would put their money on the champion. The champion would most likely win, putting the bookmaker out of business. That’s where oddsmakers come into play – they dictate the amount of money you can win depending on each match’s particulars.
If you’ve never bet on sports events before, you might want to have the concept of MMA betting odds explained in more detail first. Not to worry – although they look complex at first, once you get hold of everything, they’re fairly easy to understand.
In the UK, fractional odds are the most common way to calculate winnings. They represent the ratio of the profit won to the stake. For instance, the odds can be 5/1 (pronounced five-to-one), meaning that you win £5 for every pound you wager. Pretty simple, right?
The other two main types of odds are American and decimal odds. Most betting sites allow choosing between all three types, so you only need to understand one and you’re good to go.
Over/Under Round Betting
Next up in our MMA betting guide are the over/under round bets. In MMA, this bet type allows you to bet on when you think the fight will end.
Suppose you’re placing a bet on a three-round fight. Instead of only betting on your favourite to win, you can also bet on whether the match will end before or after 2.5 rounds. If the fight is finished mid-round, the first two and a half minutes are considered the first half of the round, while the remaining time belongs to the second half.
Most betting sites in the UK allow you to bet on the number of rounds it’ll take for a winner to be decided. Make certain, however, that the site of your choice offers over/under wagering before you make any deposits. Also, check beforehand if any special conditions apply in case, for instance, the number of scheduled rounds changes for any reason. Furthermore, try to get your hands on the statistics regarding the average number of rounds it takes to finish a certain kind of fight and check the competitors’ average fight times.
Another MMA bet type to consider for your MMA betting strategy is a proposition bet, commonly known as a prop bet. This type of wagering involves an array of bets that don’t fall under either of the two categories covered above.
Prop bets are easy to grasp and, as implied, are based on proposing a specific course of events that you can put your money on. To illustrate, a bookmaker can propose wagering on a fighter throwing ten punches more than the opponent. The outcome of the match does not affect the bet – as long as the proposed event occurs, you win even if the fighter you bet on loses in the end.
The most sought-after variation of prop bets among MMA betting enthusiasts is victory betting. Contrary to what the name might suggest, you don’t have to wager who will win the match. Instead, all you should predict is how the fight will end. You could wager, for instance, that the winner will be determined by the judges’ decision or a knockout, or you could be rooting for a forfeit. If you bet on the first of the three, keep in mind that there can be either a unanimous decision or a split decision between the judges.
Pairing Complementary Bets
If you’re browsing the web trying to get to the bottom of how to bet on MMA, you’ll also discover that you don’t have to stick to a single bet. On the contrary, you’re free to make several wagers simultaneously. For instance, if you’re sure a fighter will knock out the opponent early in the fight, why just bet on that fighter to win? Instead, you can place a second bet on how the fight will end (by a knockout) or even a third on the duration of the match (under 1.5 rounds).
While predicting all the different aspects of a fight can be intricate, betting this way can also add weight to your wallet. You can use an online MMA betting calculator to check your potential winnings before combining multiple wagers into a single bet.
The Ultimate MMA Experience
If you’ve heard of MMA, you also must have heard about UFC. The acronym stands for the Ultimate Fighting Championship, an American MMA promotion company based in Las Vegas, Nevada. UFC is the biggest company of the kind globally, and it hosts events throughout the year and the globe. In 2020, UFC events featuring more than 500 fights took place. The company has been expanding ever since Dana White took the helm in 2001 and is currently worth billions of dollars.
If you can’t get enough MMA fights to bet on, UFC betting is the way to go. UFC events are held regularly, each consisting of several ‘cards’. These are then further divided into early preliminary, preliminary, and main cards, each containing a certain number of fights. For example, in the UFC 252: Miocic vs Cormier 3 event, two fights were held in the early preliminary card followed by four fights in the preliminary card, while the last five fights were held in the main card.
In short, UFC events are sure to deliver an abundance of MMA betting possibilities and thrills.
UFC Betting Strategies
Although betting on UFC might be new to you, the world is full of sports bettors who’d never miss a UFC event. Those more experienced develop strategies over the years by keeping a watchful eye on all aspects of a match. That includes fighters’ weight class and skill set as well as variables such as the type and size of the fighting arena.
Betting on heavy favourites isn’t necessarily always the best idea. If you visit any of the UFC betting sites, you’ll see that odds on these fighters are usually quite low, meaning you won’t get much out of such bets unless you’re in it for the long haul.
Another strategy veteran bettors stick to is avoiding to bet with their heart. It’s easy to get hooked on cage fighting – it’s very engaging even if you haven’t placed any bets. Consequently, developing a personal liking for certain fighters is more than likely to happen. While betting on a fighter you like is perfectly fine in a lot of cases, there’s much more you ought to take into account when risking your money. MMA betting strategy experts advise never to bet on what you want to see happen but on the most probable outcome.
Lastly, you should be as selective as possible. Whether you prefer placing your bets on underdogs or those widely expected to win, you should always try to weigh your options and take all the factors into account. Although heavy favourites are called that for a reason, remember that they were once underdogs as well, fighting their way to the top.
UFC Betting Bonuses
Promotions and bonuses can vary from one UFC bookmaker to another. Most of the sites offer some sort of welcome bonuses, looking to attract and retain new members. You might even get to place free UFC bets and keep the winnings if your predictions turn out to be correct.
All in all, there are plenty of options for you to explore but don’t forget to read the fine print. You can redeem some bonuses only upon placing a deposit, while other offers might include wagering requirements. While this is a pretty standard practice among online sportsbooks, it’s still something you should take into consideration before you opt for a specific sports-betting site. Luckily, with so many online bookmakers on the market, you can always take your UFC predictions and money elsewhere.
Give Yourself a Fighting Chance
Relying solely on luck when making any kind of wager is rarely a good idea, if ever. If you aim for the win, we strongly advise you to resort to other, less elusive means of increasing your chances of winning. Mastering MMA rules and figuring out the ins and outs of all different bet types is the first step. Now comes the fandom part.
Joking aside, after you’ve become familiar with the basics of MMA, you should try and learn as much as possible about the fighters themselves. Fortunately, we live in a century in which access to an infinite amount of information is not only possible but also fairly easy to obtain. We’re pretty confident you’ll be able to find out everything about the competitors and their fights without breaking a sweat.
The first thing you should find out is what combat sports the MMA fighters you’re interested in practice. It’s the fighter’s style that often determines the way a fight ends. Those with a background in boxing are more likely to win by a knockout than submitting the opponent. Suppose you’re betting on rounds or methods, for example. In that case, investing your time in learning the specifics of a fighter’s professional history such as this one could prove to be quite lucrative.
Another good idea is to find out what other bettors and betting experts think. You can contact professional tipsters online who offer their predictions and advice regarding the fights you want to bet on. Bear in mind that while some of them give out tips free of charge, others will require a paid membership on their sites in order to provide the information. Alternatively, you can check out numerous insightful MMA betting Reddit threads for more MMA betting tips.
Put Your Money Where Your Research Is
As with guidelines for betting on MMA, finding all the needed information on UFC events should be a breeze, given how famous this company is. Not only can you perform background checks, but you can also catch up on past events on UFC pay-per-view (PPV). That way, you can study competitors’ strengths and weaknesses in more detail, just to make sure you’re putting your money on the right fighter. If that’s not enough, you’ll find plenty of UFC betting tips online to compare to your predictions.
Another thing on your to-do list ought to be staying up to date with the latest UFC events. Ongoing matchups play a massive role in fights’ outcomes, and the more you know, the more likely you are to come up with a winning prediction.
We won’t lie – it takes a lot of knowledge and preparation to get good at betting on UFC events, so if you’re determined to try your luck with MMA, be ready to roll up your sleeves. That said, if you’ve read our UFC betting guide carefully thus far, we have no doubts you’ll get the hang of all UFC intricacies and become a confident bettor. The only remaining question is – when?
The Time Is Now
With the COVID-19 pandemic halting everything, the past year has been extremely unpredictable for all sports events and venues. Consequently, UFC was forced to postpone some of the planned events and make significant program changes. With all this in mind, it’s only natural to wonder whether now is a good moment to start betting on MMA fights or if there are any to begin with.
Rest assured, there’s no need for concern. A quick peek at the UFC betting sites will confirm UFC has made sure to keep the business afloat even now. Although the company hasn’t hosted a full-crowd event in the US for a year, international UFC competitions are taking place on Yas Island in Abu Dhabi, now known as “Fight Island”. Moreover, with Texas businesses resuming operations at full capacity after certain restrictions were lifted, UFC president Dana
White announced his plan to move the upcoming events there in April, if not sooner.
In short, ponder no more – it is as good a time as any to start betting on UFC events. Maybe even better, considering this latest turn of events is bound to make both watching the fights and making bets more exciting.
How do MMA odds work?
First, you should decide what type of betting odds you want to use. You can stick to only one kind as most sites let you choose a preferred one. UK bettors, for example, prefer fractional odds. They might seem complex but are nothing more than the ratio of potential winnings to the money you’ve staked. Simply put, if the odds are 2/1 and you bet £1, you’ll win £2 if you correctly predict the fight’s outcome.
On the off chance that your bookie uses MMA betting odds you’re unfamiliar with, you can always turn to numerous free online odds converters for help.
Can you parlay UFC fights?
Yes, you can place parlay bets on UFC events. Keep in mind, though, that although parlay bets are more profitable, there’s also more risk involved. In other words, you’d need to be very knowledgeable and have a good strategy in place if you want to try your hand at this kind of betting.
If you’re new to this, you should also be aware that the risk involved in MMA parlay betting also differs depending on the number of bets you combine to get a single wager. The odds of correctly predicting multiple outcomes go down substantially if your bet combines four or more fights. We recommend betting on three fights at most, at least until you get the hang of it. That said, accumulating UFC bets can be a great way to make a profit and add excitement to your betting routine.
How do you bet on UFC?
With UFC being the most popular mixed martial arts promotion company, ways to bet on UFC fights online are not only numerous but also available on every corner of the web.
You can go for a traditional moneyline bet, for example, or opt for a prop bet instead. Furthermore, you can combine different types of bets to increase your potential winnings. Just remember that if you do this, the odds of winning the entire bet decrease significantly.
In the end, it’s all about the amount of risk you’re willing to take. If you’d like to learn more about the types of bets you can place on different UFC events, feel free to read through our in-depth MMA betting guide.